Anime Blu-ray/DVD Combo Review: Fruits Basket Season One Part Two

Fruits Basket Season One Part Two includes two Blu-rays and two DVDs that include episodes 14-25 of the first season of the Fruits Basket reboot anime series. The set includes both an English dub and the original Japanese audio with English subtitles.

Fruits Basket Season One Part Two
English Publisher: FUNimation Entertainment
Format: Blu-ray/DVD Combo
Release Date: February 11, 2020

Fruits Basket Season One Part Two continues the Fruits Basket reboot anime.

The set opens with the one-year anniversary of the death of Tohru’s mother, and Tohru takes Hana, Uotani, Yuki, and Kyo to her mother’s grave. At the end of this episode, the audience is given hints that Yuki and Kyo may both be hiding some kind of a secret from Tohru.

We also get to see backstories for both Uotani and Hana in this set, and this is where we start seeing some portions of the manga that weren’t animated in the original anime. These backstories appeared much later in the manga, but they work well being moved up and help to give more dimension to both of these characters. They both have interesting backstories, though Hana’s is heartbreaking.

This set also introduces three other zodiac members of the Soma family: Kisa, Ritsu, and Hiro. Kisa is still the sweet girl she was in the original, Hiro is still the obnoxious brat, and Ritsu is still annoying. At least Ritsu doesn’t appear very often in the episodes included in this set. We also get a humorous episode about Motoko and two of her underlings from the Prince Yuki fan club right before Hana’s backstory and the storyline about Kyo’s true cat form. Episode 25 shows the aftermath after Tohru confronts Kyo’s true cat form, and this features some more of the original manga that had never been animated before. I also appreciated how Episode 25 sets the foundation for what we’re now starting to see in Fruits Basket Season Two.

The Blu-ray video is 1080p High Definition 16:9 (HD Native). The audio on the Blu-ray had Dolby TrueHD: English 5.1 and Dolbu TrueHD: Japanese 2.0, while the DVD had English 5.1 Surround and Japanese Stereo. I had no complaints about either the audio or the video quality of this release.

The first disc of the set includes a commentary on Episode 18. The second disc has more in the way of bonus features. Interview with the Cast & Crew sees ADR Director Caitlin Glass interviewing the three new voice actors on the series: Mikaela Krantz (Momiji), Elizabeth Maxwell (Uotani), and Jad Saxton (Hana). There are also several “Fruits Basket Inside The Episode” features included, and this time, most of them had little or nothing to do with the actual episode it was made for. These basically consist of some of the English dub actors talking about working on the show. These were OK bonus features, but they’re not anything I’d rush to watch again. There is also a textless version of the opening song and a textless version of the closing song.

If you’re a fan of the Fruits Basket franchise, and you already have a copy of Fruits Basket Season One Part One, then this release is worth picking up and adding to your home anime video library.

Digimon Adventure: Anime to Restart Its Broadcast

The official Twitter account of the Digimon franchise has announced that the Digimon Adventure: reboot anime will restart its broadcast on June 7, 2020 and that it will restart from Episode 1.

The anime’s official website announced on April 13, 2020 that Toei Animation would delay further episodes of the series due to the spread of COVID-19.

Digimon Adventure: premiered in Japan on April 5, 2020. Crunchyroll is simulcasting the anime as it airs in Japan.

Source: ANN

Crunchyroll Expo 2020 Canceled Due to COVID-19

Crunchyroll has announced that it has canceled this year’s Crunchyroll Expo convention, due to the nature of COVID-19 and in order to emphasize the health of attendees, staff, exhibitors, and guests. The event’s website will post information regarding ticket transfers and refunds later this week. Crunchyroll Expo 2020 was scheduled to take place September 4-6, 2020.

Crunchyroll revealed that next year’s Crunchyroll Expo will take place August 6-8, 2021 at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, California.

Source: ANN

Kodansha Comics Announces Four New Manga Licenses

Kodansha Comics’ website is listing four new manga titles that will debut digitally on Tuesdays in July 2020:

  • Cells at Work!: Bacteria! (Hataraku Saikin) by Akane Shimizu and Haruyuki Yoshida [Debut Date: July 7, 2020]
  • Cells at Work!: Platelets! (Hataraku Kesshōban-chan) by Akane Shimizu, Yuuko Kakihara, and Yasu [Debut Date: July 14, 2020]
  • Cells at Work!: Baby! (Hataraku Saibō Baby) by Akane Shimizu and Yasuhiro Fukuda [Debut Date: July 21, 2020]
  • That Time I Got Reincarnated (Again!) as a Workaholic Slime (Tensei Shite mo Shachiku Datta Ken) by Fuse, Mitz Vah, and Shizuku Akechi [Debut Date: July 28, 2020]

Source: ANN

Fruits Basket Season 2: Episode 9 – “My Precious…”

Wow, this was a heavy episode. And the focus of this episode is entirely on Kyo.

Kyo has been summoned to see Akito at the annex, and poor Tohru thinks it’s a good thing. In her mind, she thinks this means that he’s finally being included with the others. But as we see, that’s not the case at all.

No, Akito is hell bent on emotionally tormenting Kyo. The usual insults like calling him a monster was going on, but Akito also declares that Kyo is responsible for his mother’s death. We finally see how she died… by jumping in front of a train while Kyo watched. Poor kid. And to make it worse, we see in a flashback how his father was drilling into Kyo’s head that his mother committed suicide. And as Akito badmouths Tohru, Kyo comes to realize that he’s in love with her. But he has to hide this from Akito, and claims that he’s not. This whole section with Kyo was hard to watch, and all I could do was to feel angry at Akito and wishing I could do something to help Kyo. Akito is the real monster here, not Kyo.

A lot of the episode is actually the scene that takes place between Akito and Kyo at the annex. Near the end, though, Kyo returns to the beach house and has a couple of important flashbacks. The first is one of Shisho giving reassurance to Kyo about finding hope, and then we see him equating that hope with Tohru. And then, we see some quick flashes from Kyo’s childhood that have an interesting connection with Tohru.

At the end, Kyo decides that while he does love Tohru, he won’t try to make her his own. But, he does want her to be by his side until Akito imprisons him for the rest of his life.

Like I said, this was a heavy episode. But, it does provide some very important character development for Kyo. But after this episode, I can’t wait for next week so I can see what will happen next.

The Effects of Coronavirus on Anime (Update #8)

I originally wrote this post on March 2, 2020, and have made three follow-up posts: one on April 14, 2020, one on April 21, 2020, one on April 28, 2020, one on May 5, 2020, one on May 12, 2020, one on May 19, 2020, and one on May 26, 2020.

It has been announced that a Fall 2020 anime has been pushed back due to COVID-19. It was also announced that three Summer 2020 anime series have been pushed back. There were also announcements of delays for two anime related to That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime. There was also an update for the Food Wars! anime. A premiere date for the second half of the No Guns Life anime has been announced for Summer 2020. A premiere date for The Misfit of Demon King Academy anime has been announced for Summer 2020. A restart date was also announced for the Diary of Our Days at the Breakwater anime.

As of this writing, these anime had an episode (or episodes) delayed due to the effects of coronavirus:

  • A Certain Scientific Railgun T (after the airing of the delayed episode, it’s been announced that two “special programs” will air in early March 2020 instead, but no reason has been given as to why there is a delay of new episodes). On April 18, 2020, it was announced that the 13th episode of the series would be delayed due to COVID-19. The episode was scheduled to air on April 24, 2020, but the 12th episode will be aired on that date instead. The staff later announced that the 13th episode will air on May 1, 2020. It was announced on May 2, 2020 that the 14th episode of the series has been delayed due to COVID-19 affecting production. The episode was scheduled to air on May 8, 2020, but the 13th episode will re-air on that date instead. The official website for the A Certain Scientific Railgun T anime announced on May 23, 2020 that the anime’s 16th episode has been delayed to July 24, 2020 due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The anime’s production committee planned for the anime’s broadcast to end in early June 2020, but it is now planning for the season to extend into September 2020. Beginning on May 29, 2020, the production committee will rebroadcast episodes chosen by the cast every week, followed by one episode voted for and chosen by fans on July 10, 2020. Episode 15 will then rebroadcast on July 17, 2020.
  • Infinite Dendogram
  • number24 (episodes 11 and 12 were delayed, and according to FUNimation, they would be streaming these episodes on April 8, 2020 and April 15, 2020, respectively)

A3! Season Spring & Summer began airing in January 2020, but due to the coronavirus outbreak exacerbating scheduling problems in the production, the series has been put on hold and will begin again in April 2020 from the first episode. The second half of the series, A3! Season Autumn & Winter, is scheduled to premiere in October 2020.

These series are being delayed from Spring 2020 to Summer 2020:

  • The Misfit of Demon King Academy: The official website for The Misfit of Demon King Academy: History’s Strongest Demon King Reincarnates and Goes to School with His Descendants anime has announced that the series will be premiering on July 4, 2020.
  • Tsukiuta The Animation 2 (while the announcement for this one says the delay is “due to the effects of recent global issues,” it’s rather safe to say that they’re referring to coronavirus)
  • Sword Art Online: Alicization – War of Underworld Part 2: Aniplex producer Shōki Niwa confirmed during the live-streamed “SAO Gensaku/Anime/Game Matomete Shin Jōhō SP” (Sword Art Online Novel/Anime/Game News Roundup Special) program that the Sword Art Online: Alicization War of Underworld Part 2 anime’s staff and cast are still aiming to premiere Part 2 in July 2020. He acknowledged that even though Part 2 was already delayed from April 2020, the anime staff and cast cannot currently handle dialogue voice recording. He added that some staff can do some work from home, such as writing the story scenarios. However, it is difficult to do a considerable amount of the anime production work outside of the studio.
  • The second season of the Re:ZERO – Starting Life in Another World- anime
  • The third season of the My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU anime
  • The second half of the No Guns Life anime: The official website for the No Guns Life anime has announced that the show’s second half will premiere in July 2020. The anime was previously scheduled to premiere in April 2020, but was delayed due to the effects of the spread of COVID-19.

The following anime began airing in the Spring 2020 season, but will be delaying new episodes in the middle of the season due to COVID-19:

  • The second season of the IDOLiSH7 anime will be delayed starting with the fifth episode. Channels that aired the anime will air a selection of episodes from the first season starting on April 26, 2020. The anime’s website and Twitter account will reveal the new broadcast date and release schedule at a later date.
  • Diary of Our Days at the Breakwater will air through Episode 3, which is as far as the production got before being affected by COVID-19. The site and the show’s official Twitter account will announce new airing and streaming dates for the rest of the episodes when they have been decided. On June 2, 2020, the production committee announced that the anime will restart its airing from the first episode on July 7, 2020.
  • The Millionaire Detective – Balance: UNLIMITED aired its first two episodes. The official website for the series announced that the airings of the anime’s third episode and onward were delayed until further notice in consideration of the spread of COVID-19. Reruns of tsuritama started airing in this series’ time slot in Japan. On April 23, 2020, the official website announced that the anime will restart airing from the first episode on July 16, 2020.
  • Appare-Ranman! will be delayed starting with the fourth episode. The website and the anime’s official Twitter account will announce the new broadcast and streaming premiere dates for the fourth and later episodes after they are decided.
  • Food Wars! Shokugeki no Soma: The Fifth Plate will be delayed starting with the third episode. The anime’s website and Twitter account will announce future television broadcast and streaming schedules when they have been decided. For the airings on April 24, May 1, and May 8, 2020, stations will air the first episodes of the fourth season of the series. It was announced on May 12, 2020, that Episode 3 and later episodes will be delayed “until July or later” due to COVID-19. On May 30, 2020, it was announced that the series will resume on July 3, 2020.
  • The official website for the Digimon Adventure: reboot anime has announced that they will delay further episodes due to the spread of COVID-19. The anime was scheduled to air its fourth episode on April 26, 2020. The website will reveal at a later date when new episodes will resume. Reruns of GeGeGe no Kitarō will air during the series’ timeslot on Japanese television.
  • The production committee for the Kingdom anime has announced that it is delaying the broadcast of episode 5 and later episodes of the third season. The committee explained that production had been going forward with enough time allotted, but the government’s state of emergency declaration against COVID-19 greatly impacted the production schedule. Episode 4 of the third season will still air as scheduled on April 26, 2020, but Episode 5 will not air as scheduled on May 3, 2020. The anime’s official website and Twitter account will announce the start date of new episodes when the committee has decided it.
  • The official website for Gundam Build Divers Re:RISE Season 2 has announced that the anime’s episodes will be delayed beginning with Episode 19, which was scheduled for May 14, 2020, due to the effects of COVID-19 on the show’s production. Episode 18 will still debut as scheduled on May 7, 2020.
  • The staff of Extra Olympia Kyklos has announced that the broadcast and streaming of the fifth and later episodes will be delayed due to the effects of the spread of COVID-19. The announcement stated that photography and editing work are delayed due to the effects of COVID-19. The series is scheduled to return with the fifth episode on June 22, 2020. The series will debut as planned through the fourth episode, which will debut on May 11, 2020. The anime’s first four episodes will re-air until the series resumes.
  • The official Twitter account for the Gal & Dino (Gal to Kyōryū) anime has announced that the series is delaying future episodes due to COVID-19 making part of the series’ production process difficult. While episode 7 will air on May 16, 2020 as scheduled, the series will rerun the first five episodes, starting on May 23, 2020. The series’ official website, Twitter account, and Instagram account will announce when the anime will resume new episodes as soon as it is decided.

The following long-running anime series are also being affected by COVID-19:

  • It has been announced that the staff are temporarily suspending part of its production on the current Pokemon anime series due to the COVID-19 situation, and as a result, new episodes are delayed. The staff will announce when the anime will return at a later date. Channels will begin re-airing older episodes.
  • Toei Animation’s official website for the One Piece anime has announced that the anime is delaying the 930th episode and later episodes due to the spread of COVID-19. The episode was scheduled to air on April 26, 2020, but the anime’s broadcast will instead rerun from the 892nd episode (the first episode of the Wano Kuni arc). The staff will reveal later when the 930th episode and later episodes will air.
  • The official website for the Boruto: Naruto Next Generations has announced that new episodes of the anime will be delayed from May 3, 2020 onwards due to the state of emergency declared in Japan against the spread of COVID-19. The series was scheduled to air its 155th episode on that day, but will now begin re-running the show from the first episode instead. The 154th episode scheduled for April 26 will still air.
  • The official website for the Black Clover anime has announced that the anime’s production committee is delaying the broadcast of the anime’s 133rd episode and later episodes, due to the effects of the spread of COVID-19 on the production. The 21st and 22nd combined issue of Weekly Shonen Jump had revealed earlier that the anime would rerun its 1st episode on May 5, 2020, the original scheduled air date of the 133rd episode. The 132nd episode will still air on April 28, 2020.

The following series has been pushed back from Summer 2020, with no new release date announced:

  • The official website for the new Higurashi: When They Cry anime project has announced that the anime has been delayed from its scheduled July 2020 premiere due to the effects of COVID-19 on the production schedule. The staff will announce the new premiere date on the anime’s official website and Twitter account as soon as a decision is made.
  • The official website for Haikyu!! To The Top, the fourth season of the Haikyu!! anime, has announced that the anime’s production committee has delayed the premiere of the anime’s second half. The committee cited the consideration given to the safety measures against the COVID-19 pandemic. The site will announce a new premiere date for the anime at a later time. The second half, consisting of episodes 14 to 25, was originally planned to premiere in July 2020.
  • The official website for J.C. Staff’s original television anime Skate-Leading Stars has announced that the anime’s production committee has delayed the anime’s premiere, due to the effects of COVID-19 and the resulting government declarations on the anime’s production. The site will announce a new premiere date when it is decided. The anime was originally scheduled for a July 2020 premiere.
  • The official website for the EX-ARM anime has announced that the anime has been delayed to “fall 2020 or later.” The English translation on the website merely stated that it is “scheduled to start broadcasting in autumn 2020.” The production committee cited the effects of COVID-19 and vowed to produce a quality work while keeping the safety of the staff and cast in mind. EX-ARM was scheduled to premiere in July 2020 before the delay.

The following anime has been pushed back from Summer 2020 to Fall 2020 due to COVID-19:

  • The official website for the second season of The irregular at magic high school television anime has announced that the anime is delayed from July 2020 to October 2020 due to the effects of COVID-19.
  • Too Kyo Games and Studio Pierrot’s official website for their original television anime series Akudama Drive has announced that the anime is delayed from July 2020 to October 2020 due to the effects of COVID-19.
  • The production committee for the Hypnosis Mic -Division Rap Battle- Rhyme Anima anime has announced that the anime’s broadcast and streaming premiere has been delayed from July 2020 to October 2020. The committee explained that it is prioritizing the health and safety of the staff and cast, in light of COVID-19 and the resulting government declaration of the state of emergency. The committee will announce more details, such as the new premiere date, on the anime’s official website as soon as they are decided.
  • The official Twitter account and website for Aniplex’s original anime Warlords of Sigrdrifa (Senyoku no Sigrdrifa) has announced that its broadcast and streaming has been delayed from July 2020 to October 2020 due to the spread of COVID-19. The anime’s production committee said that the website will announce more details such as the precise premiere date when they have been decided.
  • The official website for Kadokawa’s original television anime Maesetsu! has announced that the series is delayed to October 2020 due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Both the anime’s digital distribution and television broadcast are delayed. The anime was previously scheduled to premiere in Summer 2020.
  • The official website for the Assault Lily mixed-media franchise has announced that Assault Lily Bouquet, the franchise’s television anime, has delayed its premiere date to October 2020 to prioritize the safety of its cast and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. The anime was originally scheduled to premiere in July 2020.
  • The official website for Fujino Ōmori and Suzuhito Yasuda’s Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? light novel series has announced that the third anime season has been delayed from July 2020 to “October or later.” The website cited the effects of COVID-19, and the website and the anime’s official Twitter account will announce the new television and streaming premiere dates as soon as they are decided.

The following anime has been pushed back from Fall 2020 to Winter 2021 due to COVID-19:

  • The official Twitter account for The Promised Neverland manga announced that the premiere date of the second season of the television anime adaptation of the manga has been pushed back from October 2020 to January 2021 due to the effect of COVID-19 on the production. The planned rerun of the first season has similarly been postponed from July 2020 to October 2020.
  • The official website and Twitter account for The Quintessential Quintuplets anime has announced that the second season has been delayed until January 2021 due to the effects of COVID-19. The season, titled The Quintessential Quintuplets ∬, was originally scheduled to premiere in October 2020.

The following anime has been pushed back from Fall 2020 to an undertermined date:

  • The official Twitter account for Ichigo Animation and Mamoru Oshii’s new anime series Vladlove has announced that the series is delayed due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The announcement stated that the producers want to protect the anime’s staff, and they will announce the new release schedule after it is decided. Vladlove was previously scheduled to premiere in Fall 2020 and run for 12 episodes.
  • The production committee for Nanatsu no Taizai: Fundo no Shinpan (The Seven Deadly Sins: Anger’s Judgment), the Seven Deadly Sins franchise’s new television anime series, has announced that it is delaying the series from its previously scheduled October 2020 premiere date due to the spread of COVID-19. The anime’s official website and Twitter account will announce a new premiere date when it is decided.

Two anime related to That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime have also been pushed back:

  • The official website for the That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime anime has announced that the upcoming second season of the anime has been delayed. The production committee explained that the production had allotted enough time, but the state of emergency in Japan due to COVID-19 greatly affected their production schedules. The first cour (quarter of a year) of the second season has been delayed from October 2020 to January 2021, while the second cour is delayed from April 2021 to July 2021. In addition, the television anime of Shiba’s spin-off manga The Slime Diaries: That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime has been delayed from January 2021 to April 2021.

This list focuses on series that are also being simulcast or streamed outside of Japan. I am also not listing the various anime films that have been delayed in Japan due to the virus… with one exception. I will mention Evangelion 3.0+1.0, since we already knew this was going to be released both inside and outside of Japan. It’s a little frustrating that after all these years of delays, after finally getting a release date for June 2020, to have the film delayed AGAIN due to this. Hopefully this film will be released at some point during our lifetime.

English Cast Announced for the After the Rain Anime

The English cast has been announced for the After the Rain anime:

  • Luci Christian is Akira
  • Jason Douglas is Kondo
  • Shelley Calene-Black is Akira’s Mother/Angelica
  • Joe Daniels is Chihiro
  • Allison Sumrall is En/Ku
  • Hilary Haag is Fu/Mukihiko
  • Elizabeth Maxwell is Haruka
  • Christie Guidry is Ishi/Tsubu
  • John Swasey is Jack/Kusunoki
  • Jason Liebrecht is Kase
  • Patricia Duran is Kubo/Monica
  • Natalie Rial is Mi
  • Matthew Kuns is Moroboshi
  • Adam Gibbs is Nathan/Yamamoto
  • Lindsey Sweeney is Okamura
  • Andrew Love is Otsuka
  • Mike Vance is Shopkeeper
  • Courtland Johnson is Shota
  • Sheri Oster is Uchida
  • Gareth West is Yoshizawa
  • Mai Le is Yu
  • Maggie Flecknoe is Yui
  • Kira Vincent Davis is Yuto

The cast also includes Erica Muse, John Hallmark, and Ned Gayle.

John Swasey is directing the dub.

Sentai Filmworks will release After the Rain on home video, with the English dub, on June 30, 2020.

Source: ANN